Cabinet papers released by Cambridgeshire County Council make it clear that the guided bus project will be late in delivery, it will be expensive and it will not deliver all that was promised.
The busway, according the papers, is currently forecast to cost £6million more than the original target. Fortunately this is being largely offset by a contingency fund and other savings.
The trouble is that contractor BAM Nuttalls does not see it that way; it is claiming that the cost will be much higher and seems to be expecting the Council to foot more of the bill.
Lib Dem group leader on the County Council, David Jenkins said: ‘all credit to the officers for agreeing a tough contract and managing this difficult project but nothing can conceal the facts that it was an unpopular project to start with, that it was squeezed into a financial straight jacket and that now we are seeing the impact on its schedule, its cost and on how much the council is going to have to fund it’.
‘We were told that it would open next February and now we know it will not’.
‘We were told that no Cambridgeshire tax payers’ money would be needed and now we know that it will’.
‘And we were promised a cycleway between the City and Longstanton and top quality Park and Ride facilities in Longstanton and St Ives when it opened and now we know we are not going to get them until later.
‘Lib Dems have consistently advised the Council firstly not to build the busway and secondly to be more conservative with its financing. Now it’s suffering because it did not follow our advice’.